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Nikon Flat Profile Question...

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Is Nikon's Flat profile good at its default settings, or are other tweaks needed to get the most out of it? I assume sharpening needs to be dialed down, but what about Saturation... Do certain color channels clip on Nikon's, so a saturation adjustment within Flat is helpful in the long run?

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs
6 minutes ago, Mattias Burling said:

I always leave it just as it is. Sharpness as well. Looks great imo.

Thanks, am curious how flat it actually is. From reading about the profile on Nikon's site, Flat seems to really help open up the shadows, which really excites me since I work within the horror/thriller genres. But I've seen some highly saturated videos online, so I was wondering if the profile was slightly saturated to begin with.

@Inazuma posted some OOC samples a while back, but I can't seem to find them.

Anyway, thanks. 

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Its more saturated than bmd film. Closer to clog. But yes it gives you more shadow detail. At least one extra stop of DR, its 13 with no doubt in my mind.

In this I put it next to the bmcc which would be very close to your bmpcc.

 

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35 minutes ago, Mattias Burling said:

Its more saturated than bmd film. Closer to clog. But yes it gives you more shadow detail. At least one extra stop of DR, its 13 with no doubt in my mind.

In this I put it next to the bmcc which would be very close to your bmpcc.

 

Dang, that's a good test! Does the 750 have more DR than the 5500?

As you may have read, I picked up a Pocket last week and have used it a couple times with the Panny 12-35mm, all handheld. I used the focus button to grab quick focus and then the ring to do any racks.

So far, it seems like a nice set up. The OIS is good, the screen is fine with focus peaking, except the camera is getting excessively hot. Almost too hot to hold. I haven't seen any hot pixels, but I'm not working it that hard either.

As usual, the footage looks great... Minus the noise inherent with BM cameras. But as I have been looking at more and more footage, it almost seems redundant with my XC10...

The ProRes files do not seem to be any better than the 1080 files from my XC10 and nowhere near as good as the 4K... But the S16 feel is so prevalent with both cameras, it seems like I am getting nothing more out of the Pocket that I don't already have with the XC10... Minus lens selection and Raw, but I have no real plans in shooting Raw with Pocket. So, I'm not really sure I see the point in keeping the BMPCC. Since the camera is running so hot, I think I'm just going to return it and the lens. 

On a whim, as I sometimes do, I ordered a D5500 yesterday and after watching your comparison video and a few other videos, I think returning the Pocket may definitely be the right call for me... Especially since I already have a small collection of Nikkor lenses and Tokina zooms.

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2 minutes ago, Mattias Burling said:

I have only played a little bit with the d5500 so I cant say anything for sure. But one thing I do love about the d5500 is the size, its tiny.

Good to know, I like inconspicuous cameras. I think I have tested nearly every brand of cameras this past year, and I've learned I still like Canon the best, but I've been dying to use this Flat profile, so hopefully the D5500 will be a tool I will keep for more than 6 months. 

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From my experience the Flat profile has similar DR to clog on the c100 ii.  I personally preferred the colours too. It's a nice camera but every time you go to live view it seems to make a loud double mirror slap sound and it's hard to focus without any aids.  

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Hear ye, hear ye! I love the sensoric results of the D5300... but man, I come from an interchangeable lens background that started with the GH2. I just don't get OVFs and I like to work in liveview. That makes the D5300 just a horrid experience to be quite honest. That slapping around of the mirror. Geez. I mean, especially when shooting stills in liveview; I like the spirit, applauding yourself and all, but just 'no'... atleast the higher-end bodies have some tripod mode or something, that only uses contrast based AF detection and keep the mirror from slapping around.

And indeed, with EVFs and liveview you get that what-you-see-is-what-you-get experience and all the aids that we're used to from all these mirrorless cameras making shooting a breeze. Why can't they include that? Why do DSLRs remain to be so traditional? Ideally, I'd be shooting a mirrorless D5500, because that 24MP APS-C sensor and those colors right off the bat... ooh la la. That's where it's at. I don't need fullframe. Big bodies, big lenses. No chance of keeping things small and light. But APS-C... a great combination of compact and performance (& price). And closest to S35. Yet, when needed with mirrorless systems, you could boost it towards fullframe if so desired. With a mirrorless APS-C Nikon, finally people would give fighting over the Samsung NX1 a rest already.

I've been wanting to go mirrorless APS-C from the M4/3 system now... but Sony's not going to be it. Fujifilm is kinda close, but things like no vari-angle display and no sensor stabilization, still put some of the M4/3 cameras in front for me personally. Samsung NX1 and EOS M5 are not going to work for me. It would just be great if Nikon made some efforts there. Tell you what, they could give Sony and Panasonic a real challenge, 'cause I'd be all over it like *finger snap* that. But you know... it is what it is. Purely based on quality of the results... it's pretty spectacular; I guess that's why we just put up with quirks like that...

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18 hours ago, mercer said:

Is Nikon's Flat profile good at its default settings, or are other tweaks needed to get the most out of it? I assume sharpening needs to be dialed down, but what about Saturation... Do certain color channels clip on Nikon's, so a saturation adjustment within Flat is helpful in the long run?

I take sharpening all the way down on the D750 and add it back in post, but otherwise just leave it as it is.

To my eyes it isn't a super flat profile like Cinestyle or C-Log but yep, it does give you a bit more in the shadows. At reasonable ISOs it just really easy to push it around to create a nice look.

If you don't have the time or inclination to grade what you are shooting I've also noticed that a slightly desaturated STANDARD profile is really useful. Its pretty vivid but realistic enough colour-wise that it looks bright and cheerful, rather than wacky and artificial.

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17 hours ago, Mattias Burling said:

I have only played a little bit with the d5500 so I cant say anything for sure. But one thing I do love about the d5500 is the size, its tiny.

Good to know, I like inconspicuous cameras. I think I have tested nearly every brand of cameras this past year, and I've learned I still like Canon the best, but I've been dying to use this Flat profile, so hopefully the D5500 will be a tool I will keep for more than 6 months. 

1 hour ago, Cinegain said:

Hear ye, hear ye! I love the sensoric results of the D5300... but man, I come from an interchangeable lens background that started with the GH2. I just don't get OVFs and I like to work in liveview. That makes the D5300 just a horrid experience to be quite honest. That slapping around of the mirror. Geez. I mean, especially when shooting stills in liveview; I like the spirit, applauding yourself and all, but just 'no'... atleast the higher-end bodies have some tripod mode or something, that only uses contrast based AF detection and keep the mirror from slapping around.

And indeed, with EVFs and liveview you get that what-you-see-is-what-you-get experience and all the aids that we're used to from all these mirrorless cameras making shooting a breeze. Why can't they include that? Why do DSLRs remain to be so traditional? Ideally, I'd be shooting a mirrorless D5500, because that 24MP APS-C sensor and those colors right off the bat... ooh la la. That's where it's at. I don't need fullframe. Big bodies, big lenses. No chance of keeping things small and light. But APS-C... a great combination of compact and performance (& price). And closest to S35. Yet, when needed with mirrorless systems, you could boost it towards fullframe if so desired. With a mirrorless APS-C Nikon, finally people would give fighting over the Samsung NX1 a rest already.

I've been wanting to go mirrorless APS-C from the M4/3 system now... but Sony's not going to be it. Fujifilm is kinda close, but things like no vari-angle display and no sensor stabilization, still put some of the M4/3 cameras in front for me personally. Samsung NX1 and EOS M5 are not going to work for me. It would just be great if Nikon made some efforts there. Tell you what, they could give Sony and Panasonic a real challenge, 'cause I'd be all over it like *finger snap* that. But you know... it is what it is. Purely based on quality of the results... it's pretty spectacular; I guess that's why we just put up with quirks like that...

Valid points. I'm not sure how I'll fare without focus peaking now that I'm so used to it, but those colors and that DR... It's been tempting me for so long... I just have to give it a go. Plus, I've been really interested in stills lately. I used a t2i and an eos-m for years, so I'm sure I'll get back into the swing of DSLR filmmaking. 

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1 hour ago, j-oc said:

I take sharpening all the way down on the D750 and add it back in post, but otherwise just leave it as it is.

To my eyes it isn't a super flat profile like Cinestyle or C-Log but yep, it does give you a bit more in the shadows. At reasonable ISOs it just really easy to push it around to create a nice look.

If you don't have the time or inclination to grade what you are shooting I've also noticed that a slightly desaturated STANDARD profile is really useful. Its pretty vivid but realistic enough colour-wise that it looks bright and cheerful, rather than wacky and artificial.

I don't mind a little grading/correcting. I like a somewhat muted look, but I enjoy experimenting, so that's why I was concerned with saturation. With one of my former cams, the saturation out of camera was real wonky... Certain colors just didn't look right.

How is the WB? I've been using an average color temp for a lot of my recent work and I've found that in any lighting condition, the WB was close without too much correction needed.

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9 minutes ago, Nikkor said:

Is it me or do all the nikons produce choppy motion? My d800 does for shure and I think it's the codec.

Interesting. I've not observed that on my D750 or the D7200 I borrow from time to time. I've seen a load of D810 footage and didn't see anything in that.

7 minutes ago, mercer said:

I don't mind a little grading/correcting. I like a somewhat muted look, but I enjoy experimenting, so that's why I was concerned with saturation. With one of my former cams, the saturation out of camera was real wonky... Certain colors just didn't look right.

How is the WB? I've been using an average color temp for a lot of my recent work and I've found that in any lighting condition, the WB was close without too much correction needed.

Very personal obviously but I do think that the Nikons meter hot and are over saturated for my taste straight out the kitchen. Like you, I prefer a muted look. One thing I would say is that no colour really appears 'wrong', although green grass is very vivid, so dialling the colours down or shooting in flat works just fine. 

It is interesting though to compare different manufacturers colours and how you perceive them. I shot stills on Nikons for years then went to 5Ds and 7Ds when I got into video. About a year ago I went back to Nikons and Fujis. Comparing the same scene shot on the 5D and the D750 was unreal. My eyes had got so used to the Canon image that the Nikon appeared to have an ugly green cast. Now, if I compare the two the Canon looks orange everything. Orange orange orange. Smeared in orange. All colours equal orange.

WB is not bad but I don't use auto if that is what you mean? I do a lot of stuff under mixed lighting so I set colour temp for the dominant source, or use the LCD to judge a creative change. 

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37 minutes ago, j-oc said:

Interesting. I've not observed that on my D750 or the D7200 I borrow from time to time. I've seen a load of D810 footage and didn't see anything in that.

Very personal obviously but I do think that the Nikons meter hot and are over saturated for my taste straight out the kitchen. Like you, I prefer a muted look. One thing I would say is that no colour really appears 'wrong', although green grass is very vivid, so dialling the colours down or shooting in flat works just fine. 

It is interesting though to compare different manufacturers colours and how you perceive them. I shot stills on Nikons for years then went to 5Ds and 7Ds when I got into video. About a year ago I went back to Nikons and Fujis. Comparing the same scene shot on the 5D and the D750 was unreal. My eyes had got so used to the Canon image that the Nikon appeared to have an ugly green cast. Now, if I compare the two the Canon looks orange everything. Orange orange orange. Smeared in orange. All colours equal orange.

WB is not bad but I don't use auto if that is what you mean? I do a lot of stuff under mixed lighting so I set colour temp for the dominant source, or use the LCD to judge a creative change. 

No, I literally set an average WB temperature between daylight and incandescent... On most cameras it's usually a 4400. Part of the reason I do it is laziness, but I've also found that for my lack of post color skills, this median approach gives me some easy options in post... I can go cool or warm without stretching it too much.

Sorry, just to clarify... When you wrote that they are over saturated out the kitchen, did you mean the standard profile is and that the Flat profile fixes that?

And yeah I know what you mean about the color wash in different cameras... So to speak. I really like that warm Canon color look, but I also love what I've seen from the Nikon. As I said earlier, I'm not the best of colorists... Or even really that good at it, so these different camera brands offer unique color profiles out the gate... Different tools for different jobs. But I am going to treat the 5500 footage as my learning tool and try to get better using a simpler workflow. 

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21 hours ago, Mattias Burling said:

I have only played a little bit with the d5500 so I cant say anything for sure. But one thing I do love about the d5500 is the size, its tiny.

Wow, you weren't kidding... My D5500 just arrived and I can't get over how small, yet ergonomic it is... It's almost as small as a compact mirrorless... But with a better grip.

Btw, I watched your D750, full review, on your site last night and those shots were very impressive... Definitely some of your best work... IMO. I would love to see what you could do with a narrative shot on the D750. 

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48 minutes ago, mercer said:

Wow, you weren't kidding... My D5500 just arrived and I can't get over how small, yet ergonomic it is... It's almost as small as a compact mirrorless... But with a better grip.

Btw, I watched your D750, full review, on your site last night and those shots were very impressive... Definitely some of your best work... IMO. I would love to see what you could do with a narrative shot on the D750. 

Congratulations!

I've never used it for anything narrative (hardly ever do that kind of stuff). But I did use it for some corporate freelance and it turned out nice. The client seemed very happy.

Regarding the WB. I mostly used it in auto with preserved warm tones. Worked great for me and was very suitable for my grading style.

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3 hours ago, mercer said:

Does anyone know how you change Kelvin settings with the D5500? A lot of articles state that you can, but I don't see anything in the WB menu for it. 

The info out there is a bit contradictory, but I've not found a way to directly enter a Kelvin value on my D5300.  The cool white fluorescent WB setting should be a Kelvin value of about 4200 and that can be fine tuned either way.

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57 minutes ago, AKH said:

The info out there is a bit contradictory, but I've not found a way to directly enter a Kelvin value on my D5300.  The cool white fluorescent WB setting should be a Kelvin value of about 4200 and that can be fine tuned either way.

That's what I was thinking too. I like to stay around 44, 4500 for that same reason. Thanks. With my initial tests I was using auto, which could work fine with consistent lighting, but I think I'll use the cool white fluorescent instead. Thanks again!!!

On a side note... I am amazed at the picture quality... Who needs 4K!!!

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